resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
July, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 07
The Role of the Q Angle in Anterior Knee Pain
By Whitney Lowe, LMT
Postural distortions can lead to numerous soft-tissue disorders. Clients with these postural challenges often look to the massage therapist to help with the pain or biomechanical challenges that result.In the lower extremity, a large quadriceps angle, more commonly called the Q angle, is a postural distortion involving patellofemoral biomechanics. An exaggerated Q angle can lead to knee pain and knee pathologies, as well as compensations in other regions of the body.1
The degree of the Q angle is determined by measuring two lines superimposed on the lower extremity. One line begins at the tibial tuberosity and continues in a superior direction through the midpoint of the patella. A second line connects the anterior superior iliac spine (ASIS) with the midpoint of the patella. The angle between these two lines is the Q angle (Figure 1).
There is a disagreement in the research literature about what constitutes an exaggerated Q angle. Some sources say a Q angle as small as 10 degrees can be a problem, while others say it is not an issue until the angle is greater than 20 degrees.2 A challenge with evaluating the Q angle's role is it's not easy to accurately measure the angle. However, repeated investigations have shown people with a larger Q angle have a greater likelihood of developing numerous knee complaints.
To understand how the Q angle contributes to knee pathologies, it's helpful to look at the anatomical relationships in the region. The patella is embedded in the quadriceps tendon. There is a ridge on the underside of the patella that must fit in the trochlear groove between the two condyles of the femur (Figure 2). The patella moves superiorly and inferiorly in this groove during knee flexion and extension.
The patella's ability to track straight in the trochlear groove is determined by the quadriceps' angle of pull. When the Q angle is greater, the quadriceps pull the patella in a more lateral direction. The unequal pull on the patella causes increased tensile stress on soft tissues around the knee. Too much lateral pull on the patella also can drag it against the lateral femoral condyle and eventually cause degeneration of the cartilage on the underside of the patella - a condition known as chondromalacia patellae. Problems associated with the patella and its correct movement during flexion and extension are referred to as patellar tracking disorders. In addition to patellar tracking disorders, a larger Q angle also can be a major factor in patellar subluxation or dislocation, as well as anterior cruciate ligament sprains.
There is an increased incidence of these knee disorders in women and individuals with genu valgum. The Q angle is greater in women due to the wider pelvis, which places the ASIS farther away from the patellar midline, thereby increasing the Q angle. The Q angle also is greater in people who have the genu valgum postural distortion, more commonly known as knock-knees.
Because certain aspects of bony structure, such as a wide pelvis, determine the Q angle, it's difficult to alter the angle with soft-tissue work alone. However, treatments such as massage are helpful for addressing some of the factors that aggravate Q angle problems. For example, an imbalance in tightness between the vastus lateralis and vastus medialis muscles can contribute to patellar tracking disorders. If the vastus lateralis is too tight, it can pull the patella farther in a lateral direction. This situation often occurs in people with a larger Q angle. Comprehensive massage treatment of the vastus lateralis can reduce the distance it pulls the patella in a lateral direction.
There are numerous causes of anterior knee pain. Several of these can be related to an excessive Q angle. It's not necessary to pull out the protractor and determine the exact Q angle. However, a visual estimation of the Q angle can give important clues about the role this postural distortion plays in a variety of pain complaints. In those cases, massage treatment of the quadriceps muscle group and the retinacular fibers around the patella greatly helps reduce the detrimental results of a large Q angle.
Click here for more information about Whitney Lowe, LMT.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.